When it's time to replace your old, inefficient furnace there are a few important things to consider.
Choosing the right size furnace for your home is critial to ensurring your family's comfort and the efficient operation of your heating system. If the furnace is too small, it will run more often and use more energy to heat the same space that a larger furnace will.
The EnergyStar rating system is designed to help consumers make smart choices about how much energy a gas furnace will use during the heating season. While more efficient systems typically cost more initially, they will often pay for themselves in just a few years by using less energy to heat your home.
Todays furnace's are quieter than ever thanks to advanced engineering and features like two-stage fans, which allow the unit to distribute heat at lower fan speeds when less heat is needed.
Being without heat during a cold Chicago winter is a real hassle. By choosing a furnace with a good record of reliabilty you will reduce the odds of a furnace breakdown and ensure your investment will provide reliable heat for years to come.
Have questions about buying a new furnace? The experts at Air Specialties Air Conditioning and Heating can answer all your home heating questions.
With the increasing popularity of heat pumps in some areas of the U.S., many homeowners are asking if a heat pump is a good option for their Connecticut area home. Here is an overview of how heat pumps differ from traditional gas furnaces.
The main difference between a furnace and a heat pump is that a heat pump can be reversed to either heat or cool a home. A heat pump consists of two parts: an indoor unit called an air handler and an outdoor unit that is similar to a central air conditioner – called a heat pump. A compressor circulates refrigerant that absorbs and releases heat as it travels between the indoor and outdoor units.
Depending on the season a heat pump exchanges the cool air with warm air, or the other way around. Even air that's seems cold can have heat energy. When it's cold outside the heat pump extracts the heat and transfers into the home. When it’s hot outside, it reverses the flow to work like an air conditioner, removing heat from your home.
When considering a heat pump it's important to understand that, unlike a gas furnace which creates heat, a heat pump can only exchange heat, and will be unable to deliver a high level of warm air that is required to heat homes in the colder climate of Connecticut.
Have home heating questions? Call Air Specialties Air Conditioning and Heating. We're here to help.
The government's ENERGY STAR rating is designed to help consumers make smart choices when choosing an appliance for the home. ENERGYSTAR's rating of Most Efficient 2014, represents the leading edge in energy efficient gas furnaces this year.
Included in the list is Carrier's Infinity® 98 Series with Infinity® Control, which achieves AFUE of up to 97.4%. Using Greenspeed™ intelligence, which adjusts modulating gas valve output from 40% to 100% of capacity in one-percentage-point increments for precise comfort. Variable-speed ECM blower and inducer motors operate at quieter, lower speeds.
Depending on the size of the unit, the Infinity® 98 Series can save as much 23% over a standard gas furnace. This can add up to significant savings in the long run.
For the full list of most efficient gas furnaces for 2014, visit EnergyStar.gov
For all your home heating and furnace questions, call Air Specialties Air Conditioning and Heating we're always here to help.
Early November before the cold weather sets in and the snow begins to fall, is a good time to ensure your home's HVAC system is ready for the long Chicagoland winter ahead. The experts at Air Specialties Air Conditioning and Heating recommend that homeowners perform some simple fall heating and air conditioning maintenance tasks.
One of the simplest ways to keep your furnace running at peak efficiency is to ensure that you change your air filter regularly. Your furnace will breathe easier, and so will you!
If you have a programmable thermostat, check the timer function to ensure it's set to turn on and off at the proper time. A properly set thermostat will keep you comfortable and
Before covering your central air conditioner, vacuum up debris that may be clinging to the cooling fins.
Clean around your furnace and check that there is nothing obstructing the vents around the blower compartment.
Check your home's supply and return air vents to ensure there are no obstructions and that the air is flowing freely.
Consider adding more insulation to your attic in order to increase the efficiency of your heating and cooling system. Weather stripping is another relatively inexpensive way to keep the cold weather at bay this winter.
When moving into a new house there are many things to inspect to ensure there are no hidden surprises. One of the most important is the home's heating system. Taking the time to ask questions and inspect the furnace or boiler can save you potential headaches down the road.
Here are some things to look for:
1. Turn on the furnace and listen for unusual noises. Squeaks and rattles could indicate a mechanical problem, lack of maintenance or just indicate an older furnace that is showing its age.
2. Ask the real estate agent for the age of the furnace or boiler. A gas furnace will typically last 15-20 years. Also, keep in mind that older heating systems can be more costly to operate.
3. Check the unit's EnergySTAR® rating. If you're lucky the label will still be attached to the unit. If not, the unit's serial number can be used to contact the manufacturer for efficiency information.
Finally, for your peace of mind, it's always a good idea to have the home's heating and cooling system inspected by a professional to identify any potential problems that could end up costing you money in repairs or higher utility bills.
Have questions about heating and cooling systems? Call Air Specialties. We're here to help.
If you have an older heating system you’ve likely experienced a range of noises over time, especially as it nears the end of it's lifespan. However, most newer furnaces and boilers are designed to run very quietly.
Here are some of the sounds you may hear from your home's heating system and what they could indicate:
Screeching Furnace Noises
If you hear a screeching noise coming from your furnace, it could be a problem with the motor, such as a worn bearing.
Pinging or popping sounds often happen when the air ducts expand and contract and are usually nothing to worry about.
This can indicate a serious problem with the furnace, such as a loose motor mount, that you should have a technician check as soon as possible.
When the furnace shuts down the hot metal parts will often make a crackling sound as they cool down.
Loud booming sounds may come from air ducts as they expand and contract in very cold weather, especially when a basement is unheated. It can also indicate the furnace has dirty burners that should be serviced by a heating technician.
If these sounds are accompanied by a blower that is turning on and off more frequently or is blowing cool air, it may be time to have Air Specialties inspect the unit.
When purchasing a home there are many systems to check to ensure everything is working properly and there are no hidden problems. One of the most important is the home's heating system. Taking the time to ask questions of the seller and inspect the unit can save you potential headaches down the road. Here are some things to check:
1. Turn on the unit and listen for noises. Squeaks and rattles from a furnace could indicate a mechanical problem, lack of maintenance or just be symptomatic of an older furnace that is wearing out.
2. Ask the current owner or real estate agent for the age of the furnace. A gas furnace will typically last 15-20 years. Also, keep in mind that older furnaces can be more expensive to operate and may require more frequent repairs.
3. Check the unit's EnergySTAR® rating. Sometimes a label will be attached to the unit. If not, the unit's serial number can be used to contact the manufacturer for energy efficiency ratings.
Finally, for your peace of mind, it's a good idea to have the home's heating and cooling system inspected by a professional HVAC technician to identify any potential problems that could end up costing you money in repairs or higher utility bills.
Have questions about heating systems? Call Air Specialties. We're here to help.
The heat exchanger is one of the most critical components of a furnace's heating system. It's where the combustion gasses enter after exiting the burners to dissipate the heated air. As the combustion gasses are drawn into the heat exchanger, heat is transferred onto the heat exchanger walls. The combustion gasses, which are at this point beginning to cool down, exit through exhaust pipes by a draft inducer blower and are sent out of the home. In a high efficiency furnace, these gasses go through a second heat exchanger where even more heat is extracted before they are vented out of the home.
As part of the heating process, a blower motor and fan take air from inside the home and draw it across the heat exchanger, which has been heated by the combustion gasses. The air picks up heat from the heat exchanger walls and is blown through the home's ductwork, where it then exits through vents throughout the home.
Because the heat exchanger is also responsible for removing exhaust fumes from the home, it's important that a qualified heating technician inspect it for any cracks or damage that can cause dangerous carbon monoxide gas (CO) to leak into the living space.
Have questions about your furnace heat exchanger? Call Air Specialties Heating and Air Conditioning. We're here to help.
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